Mrs. Valerie Bunting – Secretary

Valerie Bunting – Scretary

I have owned Arabian horses since 1974. In 1976, together with my husband, we established Forgehill Stud in the UK, where we bred Arabians and derivatives, mainly for ridden performance and racing. I took out a trainer’s licence in 1986 and was UK’s leading trainer on two occasions.

I then moved to Qatar to train horses for HH Sheikh Abdulla bin Khalifa Al Thani, where I was leading trainer 4 times. Whilst there, I helped him establish his Umm Qarn Farm. I then accepted the position as General Manager of Umm Qarn which developed an increasingly large breeding programme, this involved travelling the world sourcing the best foundation stock available. Over the next 12 years Umm Qarn achieved many major international successes, not only with the racehorses but also in endurance and in the show ring. During this time I also established their satellite stud farm in UK with 150 Arabians, including stallions standing at public stud and an AI and quarantine centre. The horses bred there are the foundations of the present Umm Qarn dynasty.

For some years I have lived at my farm in France, where we breed Arabians mainly for racing. I am also the racing manager for a number of internationally winning horses as well as representing and promoting Arabian stallions from several countries for the breeding of racehorses.

I joined WAHO in 1976 and was invited by Jay Stream to join the Executive Committee in 1996. I became WAHO’s Secretary in 2012 after the retirement of Freddie Brum from Uruguay. Over the past 20 years, I have not missed a single EC meeting or WAHO Conference. I have been WAHO’s representative to all the International Federation of Arabian Horseracing (IFAHR) meetings and I am the first and current Chairman of their Registrar’s subcommittee, ensuring we work in close cooperation with WAHO so that the WAHO Definition and the relevant rules which govern stud books and registration are not overlooked in the racing rules.

Apart from my work for WAHO, I was on the steering committee for the establishment of Arabian Racing Organisation (UK), and am also a member of both the Arab Horse Society, UK, and the Association Fran├žais Cheval Arab De Course (AFAC) in France. I am an avid supporter of horse welfare not only for the performance disciplines but also with equine reproduction and the current breeding methods. I also have a keen interest in the history and pedigrees of Arabians, especially the racehorses, and seeing how they have evolved over the centuries.